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Why route planning with Microsoft Excel is a challenge

Assessing Microsoft Excel as a route planning tool, highlighting why dedicated route planning software like EasyRoutes presents a compelling alternative solution.

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Your delivery workflow is not complete without route planning. It’s a stage that needs to be done carefully because the remainder of the delivery process after your driver leaves your warehouse depends on it.

However, because it was not built for route planning, Microsoft Excel is ineffective as a tool for this use case. It can be good way to organize your address book, but modern route planners, on the other hand, can now sort all your addresses into an optimized order and do a lot more.

You’ve come to the right site if you’re curious in how Microsoft Excel can be used to design routes and whether it’s better to utilize specialized route planning software.

Table of Contents

  • How to Plan Routes With Microsoft Excel
  • Route Planning Issues that Microsoft Excel Just Can’t Handle
  • Why You Should Use Dedicated Route Planning Software
  • Why should I use a route planning program instead of Microsoft Excel?
  • What is the Best Way to Map a Route with Multiple Stops?
  • It’s Easier to Plan Routes with a Route Planning App

How to Plan Routes With Microsoft Excel

Spreadsheets in Excel are a necessary component of workplace life. Excel Spreadsheets are used by a variety of enterprises in a variety of industries to streamline business processes. Spreadsheets have been assisting organizations for years by handling a variety of responsibilities ranging from accounting to sales and marketing.

For a long time, one of the most useful features of a spreadsheet has been route planning. People utilized Excel spreadsheets to design multi-stop routes before Google Maps and other advanced route planning technology.

  1. To begin using Microsoft Excel to plan routes, you must first create two columns for names and addresses. Add a list of names to the names field for whom you need to provide deliveries to. Add the correspondence address to each of these names in the address column.
  2. House number, street number or street name, city, state, and zip or postal code must all be included in the address.
  3. For the street name, city, state, and zip code, you can divide the address into different columns. It can be extremely useful when trying to sort addresses by zip code or postal code.
  4. Start designing your itinerary when you’ve set up the spreadsheet and filled in all of the relevant details.
  5. Adding addresses to a spreadsheet increases the data’s visibility. Do you have a huge list of addresses to manage? Don’t worry, you can break them up into tiny pieces. When you break them down into smaller, more manageable chunks, they become easier to deal with.
  6. On the basis of city or zip code, deliveries or duties can be recognized and assigned. This distinguishes the two and makes it easy to assign a specific delivery duty to a driver.
  7. If you’ve already input a long list of addresses and want to sort them, you can do so by selecting the column in which you want the addresses to be classified.
  8. Following the creation of the smaller pieces, you can either construct a delivery order or let your drivers choose their own path. It’s best if you construct the routes first and then assign them to the drivers to better manage and control your deliveries.

Route Planning Issues that Microsoft Excel Just Can’t Handle

Even if you have all of the delivery information and have planned the best path, you will eventually need to use a GPS navigation device to compute the optimal route and plot addresses on a map. This can be a very efficient method of establishing delivery routes. There are several tasks that an Excel Spreadsheet cannot perform. These are a few of them:

  • To begin with, there are no maps.
  • There isn’t any route planning or optimization.
  • Priorities or a time frame aren’t taken into account.
  • There is no turn-by-turn navigation available.
  • There is no proof of delivery.
  • There are no real-time traffic updates available.

Why You Should Use Dedicated Route Planning Software

EasyRoutes and other route planning applications offer a wide range of functions and may be used by businesses in a variety of industries, including food and beverage, field service, cleaning, postal delivery, retail distribution, and more.

One of the most useful features of route planning software is the ability to construct a stop order and optimize the route based on time limitations and priorities.

Businesses can prevent risks and unclear scenarios in their everyday delivery duties by using a route planning system to enhance the workflow. Organizations that deal with deliveries, such as commercial transportation companies, e-commerce businesses, or even individual drivers and contractors, might profit greatly from route planning tools.

The route planning app creates routes, provides turn-by-turn directions, can accommodate route adjustments or additions, reduces mileage, ensures on-time deliveries, and improves efficiency and customer satisfaction.

A decent route planning software will allow users to concentrate on other tasks while routing activities are automated. It not only saves you time and money, but it also enhances the efficiency of your deliveries. You wouldn’t anticipate such functionality from an Excel Spreadsheet.

Why should I use a route planning program instead of Microsoft Excel?

Microsoft Excel does not have a route planning or optimization function or tool. It can only provide a set of movable tables for adding and storing data. With Microsoft Excel, it is nearly hard to plan efficient routes. A route planner is specifically developed to provide path creation and navigation planning and optimization functions.

What is the Best Way to Map a Route with Multiple Stops?

When planning a route with several stops, you’ll need to discover a program that can help you organize all of your stops and avoid risks or uncertainties by using exact data and optimum routes. Using a multi-stop route planner is the simplest method to do this.

It’s Easier to Plan Routes with a Route Planning App

The purpose of route planning apps is to improve your delivery process and make chores easier for drivers and businesses. We tried to highlight the reasons why utilizing a dedicated route planning tool makes things easier for you in this article.

We hope that the reasons provided have persuaded you to convert from a manual to an automatic system. If you have any further questions about why you should use a route planning tool for your business, please contact us and we will gladly assist you.

Learn more about EasyRoutes at Roundtrip.ai, or click the button below to install EasyRoutes from the Shopify App Store:

Get EasyRoutes on the Shopify App Store
Get EasyRoutes on the Shopify App Store

About Roundtrip

Roundtrip's mission is to equip every business with the software tools they need to deliver products to their customers in a delightful way. Thousands of Shopify merchants worldwide choose EasyRoutes to power their local deliveries across dozens of product categories, from meal kits and groceries to coffee, cupcakes, kibble, and so much more. Our easy-to-use route planning and delivery optimization app is certified Built for Shopify, a two-time Shopify staff pick, and the top rated local delivery app on the Shopify App Store.

"The EasyRoutes app saves us probably 40 hours per week, and I can genuinely say it would be hard to run our business without it…We plan our routes each morning with three clicks of a mouse which is a massive time saver."
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